What is Acupuncture?
Acupuncture is a form of Traditional Chinese Medicine that is more than 2000 years old. Acupuncture points lay through out the body along meridians. These meridians are pathways that move energy in the body in order to restore balance to our organs, tissue, and muscles.
Acupuncture is the art and science of inserting thin sterile, disposable, stainless steel needles into specific acupuncture points. The sensation of a slight tingle or dull ache may occur upon insertion, however, no sensation may be felt. An acupuncture point is a reservoir of energy that stimulates a healing response in the body.
Qi or vital energy protects the body from illness, pain, and disease. Your health is directly related to the balance and harmony of Qi in your body. There are 14 major meridians in the body that transport Qi.
Illness will manifest when there is a disharmony in the flow of Qi. A disharmony is the result an imbalance in the mind and body caused by physical trauma, stress, diet, and overexertion. If a disruption in the flow of Qi is not corrected the body will weaken and illness, pain, or disease may arise.
Who can benefit from acupuncture?
Ancient Chinese wisdom believes that if a person is functioning in harmony with balance he will fend off disease and illness. Acupuncture restores and maintains balance in the body. A symptom arises as a warning signal that the body is out of balance.
Western medicine directs its focus on looking outside of the body for solutions to symptoms. When we direct more attention towards maintaining health through good nutrition, proper sleep, and healthy life style many symptoms resolve and overall health is greatly improved.
The most important aspect of an acupuncture treatment is the focus on the total health of the individual. When the wellbeing of the person is at the heart of the treatment the individual becomes the focus rather than the symptom.
What does it treat?
Commonly acupuncture is sought after as a last resort to treat a chronic condition that has not been resolved or improved through traditional western medicine. Acupuncture treats stress, anxiety, insomnia, digestive issues, hormonal imbalances, depression, headaches, sciatica, arthritis, and pain management. Studies have also concluded that acupuncture may decrease side effects from chemotherapy and radiation, such as, nausea, vomiting, and loss of energy.
How it works?
Hundreds of acupuncture points lay all over the body on pathways or meridians that connect to our organs and muscles to keep our body functioning without any thought or effort. Acupuncture points are a specific location where the acupuncture practitioner may influence Qi restoring balance to the whole body.
Neurologically acupuncture points are located where nervous system stimulates muscle and connected tissue. The result of stimulation is increases the circulation of blood as well as the releases endorphins the body’s natural painkiller.
The manifestations of symptoms are not characterized as a disease but rather a distress signal from the mind and body. When a symptom of pain or emotional distress arise it is a warning signal that your body is out of balance. It is imperative to remember that the symptom is not the disease. The cause of the symptom often comes from somewhere else in the body. Traditional methods or therapies only treat the symptomology missing the underlying cause of the presenting symptom. Allowing the root of the symptom to penetrate deeper into the body increasing in severity and dysfunction.
Before proceeding need to understand common causes of disease or dysfunction
Causes of Disease: Internal and external
Internal: Emotions directly affect the tissue, organs, and muscles in the body.
All emotions have an effect on the body. An intense, repressed, or prolonged emotional imbalance will have a direct correlation to overall health and wellness. Excessive anger, joy, sadness, grief, worry, fear, or shock are the most damaging emotions to the body and mind. When not addressed excessive or repressed emotions can cause us to become ill physically and mentally.
Conditions in our environment such as wind, cold, heat, damp, and dryness have a direct correlation to our health. Wind from a draft or fan may cause twitching or spasms.
In excess or under poor health conditions these environmental influences penetrate deeply into the body wrecking havoc on the organs in the body. Hot, cold, and damp can be exasperated or influenced food.
Symptoms are internal indicators that something is happening in the body. Many conditions that directly effects our health are commonly malady’s that are disregarded as detrimental to the whole body.
* Over work * Poor diet
* Lack sleep * Exercise/lack of exercise
* Chronic condition * Stress
Traditional Chinese Medicine believes that the human body is composed of various tissue and organs. Meridians are pathways that transport Qi and blood to nourish the whole body. These pathways directly connect to every organ, tissue, muscle, and cell in the body creating a natural and complete internal network. When illness or an imbalance arises treatment is based on balancing the whole body. Health of an organ is may be observed by a predominate emotion. The state of an organ will effect emotion.
The Hearts emotion is joy/sadness and circulates blood
The Livers emotion is visionary/anger and is responsible for tendon flexibility
The Lungs emotion is inspiration/grief and controls respiration
The Spleens emotion is sympathy/worry it hold blood in the vessels
The Kidneys emotion is will/fear and it rules the bones
Pulse: Taking the pulse an integral to diagnosing imbalance in the body.
The quality/quantity of the pulse indicate health of the organs/meridians in the body.
Examining theTongue: The color, shape, and coating on the tongue indicators the body’s health.